Connacht Outdoor Track & Field Championships, 11th June 2016 in Dangan, Co. Galway

Funmi Talabi is Fastest Girl in her age group in Connacht sprint for 4th year in a row!

Day 1 Results: Longford Athletics Club won gold and silver in relays, gold in U12 girls sprint and bronze in U9 pairs turbo javelin

For the first day of the Connacht Outdoor Athletics Championships 30 of the youngest members of Longford Athletics Club competed at Dangan track in Co. Galway. 4 X 100m Relays were the first event of the day putting Longford to the test to see if they had got the right combination of runners in each age group. It is a huge learning experience to compete at Provincial level with the biggest athletics clubs from Galway, Mayo and Sligo. Longford entered U9, 10 and 11 boys’ teams and two U12 girls’ teams, many taking part for the first time in their new blue club singlets.

The U12 Girls team had experience on their side as sprinters Funmi Talabi and Laura Farrell joined together with Siog Reilly and Kaela Brady. The girls put on an impressive display of speed to win Gold with their time of 59.23. There was great delight when the newest team, U9 Boys, Max Gallagher, Cormac & Padraic Mulligan and Conor Wright won the set of Silver medals. Both teams qualify for Athletics Ireland National Relay Finals in July.

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The U9-11 age groups compete in pairs with their times/distances added together.  Longford had very solid performances in all 4 events on the track and in the field- long jump, turbo javelin, 60m sprint and 300-600m middle distance. Twin brothers Cormac and Padraic Mulligan from Dromard worked well together winning Bronze in the U9 Boys turbo javelin. The U9 pair of Conor Wright and Max Gallagher placed 5th overall in the 300m. U11 pair Enda Quinn and Conor Mulligan also placed 5th overall in the 600m.

A few results stood out if this had been an individual competition for this age group: Hayden Nolan, 9.84 seconds in U10 sprint would have secured 3rd place. Conor Wright 58.72 seconds in U9 300m would have been 4th place if individual. Ryan Keogh 20.38m in U11 turbo javelin would have been 5th place individual.

The outstanding achievement of the day was Funmi Talabi’s gold medal in the U12 girls 60m sprint. She was first in her heat and first again in the semi-final to earn her place as one of the final 8 girls on the starting line. With cheers of encouragement from her Longford AC clubmates Funmi achieved a new pb of 8.84 seconds as she sprinted to victory. This is the 4th year in a row that Funmi has been the fastest girl in her age group at Connacht level. From 9.91 seconds at U9 in 2013 to present she has improved year after year knocking milliseconds off her time in every race.  She will have a busy summer running in both AI and Community Games National Finals in sprint and on relay teams.

Day 2 of the Championships will take place next weekend at Sligo IT for all juveniles U13+. Longford AC will face stiff competition as over 400 athletes will take to the track hoping to earn qualification to Nationals.